Butterfly Gala

As the weather has been superb this week, Mr L and I have been spending quite a lot of time out in the garden and in greenhouse, sowing vegetable and flower seeds.  I love the potential of this time of year; the bright green buds of new leaf growth, tiny new shoots emerging through the soil together with the amazing colour variety of spring flowers.  The insects are also emerging.  It’s lovely to see lots of bees and butterflies flying around, although our pussy cats’ favourite game at the moment is catching (and eating – gross!) butterflies, much to my chargrin.  To compensate for our cats’ antisocial behaviour, I have sown a multitude of flowers that are attractive to butterflies and bees, providing lots nectar and pollen for them.  It’s the least I can do!

Butterflies are the subject of my cards this week, using the Stampin’ Up! Butterfly Gala stamp and accompanying punch and the Crackle Paint background stamp.

I began by stamping and punching out the butterflies.  I like to add odd numbered accents to my card so I used 2 large and 1 small butterfly for each card.  My colour themes were to be monochrome and pink/white/black so I used Lovely Lipstick ink and a Wink of Stella brush to colour one set of butterflies and the Wink of Stella by itself for the other set.

Once coloured in, I mounted each butterfly onto a Basic Black or Lovely Lipstick foil background, adhering only the body section so that the wings could be gently folded up to provide some 3D interest.

The background pieces were stamped using the Crackle Paint stamp using black ink.  The sentiments are from Butterfly Gala and Forever Lovely and cut out using the stitched rectangle framelits and the Pretty Label punch.  To complete the butterflies, I added some gemstones for the heads.

Here’s the Lovely Lipstick version….

….and the monochrome version.

 

 

 

Images © 2019 Stampin’ up!

Who can resist?

Mr L and I recently returned from a fabulous holiday to Bangkok where I purchased this beautiful scarf.  I had walked past it twice, admiring it from a distance, but on the third time I could resist no longer and bought it – because I loved it and you can never have too many scarves!

Something about the scarf made me wonder if I could recreate the colours and effects on the scarf for a card and the only way I could think to achieve this was to use the emboss-resist technique and some ink blending.

I began by doing some simple emboss-resist by repeat stamping images on white card using Versamark ink and then applying clear embossing powder.

Once heat set, I blended pastel inks over the card.  The embossing powder ‘resists’ the ink so the card gets coloured and the images stay white although sometimes a quick wipe with a tissue is needed to clean off any ink from the embossed images.

Round one was a success so I decided to try for the recreation of the scarf.  This required ink blending first and then stamping with Versamark and applying clear embossing powder once the ink was dry.

Once the embossing powder was heat set, I sponged black ink over the card, adding layers until I had the depth of colour I wanted.  Again, a tissue was needed at the end just to remove any black ink residue from the embossed images.  I tried both pastel and bright inks and I think the brights are more suited to this technique.

I’m quite happy with the brights background and I think it looks quite similar to the scarf so mission accomplished!

The pastel under black doesn’t have quite the same contrast but still looks pretty.

I thought the two white and pastel cards were suitable for Easter cards as, whilst they don’t have the standard bunnies/chicks/eggs design, they are quite spring like.

I think it’s important when you’ve spent time making the background for that to be the focal point of the card so I only added small greetings so that the background could still shine through.  A lovely little sprig of blackthorn flowers helps set the scene.

 

 

 

 

Images © 2019 Stampin’ Up!